Prep 20 mins
Cook 35 mins
I have used this scrapbook recipe many times as a starter or as part of a hot buffet of dishes. It is unashamedly rich and quite delicious, and all the other food you serve can therefore be lighter. It is quick to make and really impressive! Don't peel the prawns you use to mark the portions -- they look best when whole, in the shell. Make two separate tarts for larger-scale entertaining. Although this recipe is probably fairly well known, I have no idea where it comes from.
- 1 1⁄4 lbs flaky pastry dough (600 g)
- 2 lbs mixed seafood, raw (1 kg)
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons cognac (or use whisky, brandy or rum)
- 16 ounces fresh cream (2 large cups, 500 ml)
- 4 eggs, whole
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon tomato ketchup
- 2 teaspoons garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt (preferably a seasoned salt, to taste)
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon black pepper, coarsely ground
- 1⁄2 cup fresh parsley, very finely chopped
- 8 large shrimp, largest size you can find (headless, unpeeled)
- Line a square or rectangular, fairly shallow quiche or other ovenproof dish with the pastry. I find the well-known rectagular Pyrex or Marinex glass baking dishes perfect for this. A shallow tin will also do.
- Prick the base with a fork, and set oven at 400 deg F/200 deg Celsius.
- For the seafood, use a mixture of raw, ready-prepared scallops, peeled shirmps, lobster, fresh mussels, fresh clams, whatever you find. Use good quality seafood.
- Cut up in bite-sized pieces and make sure there are no sand or bits of shell left. (The packets of mixed frozen seafood from shops, defrosted and drained, will do).
- Melt the butter in a pan, and when sizzling, add the seafood, and stir briefly. Add the liquor. (At this stage you can flame it if you like). Keep heat high and only par-cook them so they shed their liquid. Season lightly with salt or seasoning salt.
- Remove with a slotted spoon so any liquid drips off and let cool.
- Beat the eggs and yolks into the cream, add the ketchup, garlic, a little more salt, the nutmeg and the pepper. Stir in the parsley.
- Spread the shellfish over the pastry, the pour the cream mixture over the shellfish.
- Decorate with an unpeeled raw shrimp (prawn) on each portion.
- Bake for 25 - 35 minutes, until the pastry and filling are puffy and golden.
- Serve hot. Divide the portions neatly, and lift each carefully from the dish.